9 Ways to Be Happier as an Artist

by Carly Schorman
Senior Editor

I can’t help noticing that it seems like a lot of people I know have been down in the dumps lately.

So many of the artists in my life seem overworked, underwaged, always tired, &/or battling the beasts of self-doubt and dejection. As a person who always dealt with the perils of depression, I’ve tried to shape out some important realizations that helped me along the way.

I also reached out to #TeamYabYum for some of their suggestions as well.

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(1) Stop comparing yourself to other people.

Let’s start with the obvious here… Theodore Roosevelt said, “Comparison is the thief of joy” and boy-oh-boy was he right. Everyone is on their own path and that path is not necessarily linear. In fact, as an artist, you’re not even on a path. You should be forging a whole new way. You should be out there with the bulrushes and horny toads and that creepy, lurking thing you worry might be the workings of your own mind or it might really be following you. Both are scary and you don’t know which is more frightening.

To be an artist is like committing yourself to a religion in a way (albeit a distinctly different way). You just have to keep moving forward with blind faith that there is meaning in the journey. And, in no circumstance, should you turn your head away from where you are going to see where everyone else is. It will only distract you.

(2) Don’t Anchor Yourself to Depression

I know, I know… the artistic temperament and all that other bullshit we’ve been fed about suffering and depth of expression. But there is a serious issue with romanticizing the Artist’s Nature that has been a detriment to all of us for far too long.

I’ll admit it, depression and mania both carry their own creative force – even if it’s just channeling out the flurry in your brainspace. And, while they feel like they might fan the creative fires, they burn through creative minds. You can’t create art when you can’t get out bed in the morning. Or when you’re dead. If we continue to romanticize mental illness amongst artists, we will continue to lose artists to mental illness.

And, since were being totally honest here, anyone who tells you getting to the other side of depression (or mania) doesn’t impact your creative process is either lying to make the process appear easier at the start or someone who hasn’t really been through the proverbial ringer. But that doesn’t mean you won’t be a better artist once you get to the other side. I certainly feel that once I retrained myself to write without the reliance of manic urges or depressive purges (or drugs) I don’t honestly know what I thought was so special about my earlier work. Maybe it was all that bipolar grandiosity swirling around in my untidy mind that convinced me I could only produce in that state. Depression is, after all, a dirty filthy liar.

Fighting to get a handle on your depression is a worthy struggle. You might not get to the place where you control it, but you can get to a place where it can’t control you. And that, my friends, is a place worth checking out. It won’t be an easy journey, but you won’t lose yourself along the way. And you just might start to unearth some of the richer complexities of your own mind. That could do wonders for your work.

(3) Follow Your Instincts

This suggestion comes to us from Mitchell Hillman and I totally agree. As an artist, you should should trust your gut when pursuing new projects or new directions. Always be open to innovation, but also learn to trust the artistic impulses that drive your creativity.

You can always see what works and what doesn’t when you get to the revision stage (and, yes, there always should be a revision phase), but when new ideas pop up, it’s best to grab hold and run with them.

Some will work and some won’t but you won’t know until you try. And boldly following through on your (non-criminal) creative urges is the surest way to uncover your true voice.

(4) Learn to Take Criticism

This one comes from our infamous YabYucker Chris Nunley and I think it’s important advice for any artist. Part of being an artist is putting your work out for public scrutiny and that means exposing yourself to criticism or, worse, ridicule.

It’s sorta like asking someone out on a date… with a poem… that you have to read out loud… in front of everyone you’ve ever known or ever will know… while standing in your underwear. It can leave you feeling vulnerable.

And then the comments start coming in or crickets (which might be worse). The internet makes everyone feel like their opinion merits sharing and then there are ACTUAL CRITICS who might join the conversation.

There are different ways to navigate the tenuous waters of criticism to save you unnecessary hurt feelings. Here are the two I suggest:  (1) Use the constructive points of criticism to improve your work. Maybe someone will bring up some valuable critiques that you can use to make your next undertaking even better. If you don’t agree with the assessment, dismiss it outright. Fuck everyone else. (2) Totally ignore the criticism. Don’t read the comments. Know you put your best foot forward and you’ll keep striving to do even better next time. That’s really all you can do. Fuck everyone else.

(5) You Don’t Have to be a Hustler

We live in the era of the Artist-Hustler. I suppose, really, if you take a look at history, artists have a history of hustling. Troubadours trading tales for board, poets seeking patrons, painters selling portraits… it’s a tale as old as time.

Now fast forward to the 21st Century where there’s the internet in every home (not really) and social media to provide artists direct access to potential fans everywhere. Where does one draw the line between self-promotion and self-debasement? Everyone is telling artists they have to sell themselves in order to sell their work.

You can say to hell with that. Maybe you were born with that hustler-style and you want to make it big anyway you can. I get that. I roll that way, but plenty of folx don’t feel the same. But maybe you just want to focus on perfecting your craft and leave the rest to the hands of fate. That’s cool too.

Take a Bob Dylan approach to the business of music and just say no. Maybe you’ll be limiting your chances of breaking big. Or maybe investing the time into being the best artist you can be will serve you better than a thousand networking hours. Who can say? And, more importantly, who fucking cares? We’re all rolling the dice here. You have to decide for yourself where you want to put your energy.

(6) Self Care is Product Development

You probably know all the types. There’s the Bathroom Breakdown type and  the I’m-Too-Big-for-this-Gig. There’s the type that disappears for a few days/weeks and sends the internet into a flurry (aka The Andrew Jemsek) and then there’s the type that builds it all up until they have a complete psychological breakdown on Facebook.

The thing is, life is hard. Making music is also hard and, oftentimes, thankless. And, if we’re being totally honest here, the world’s been a bit of a shitshow lately. It wears you down.

If you need to unplug for a few days, do it. If you need to skip a friend’s gig to catch up on some sleep, tell them you’ll make it out next time. If you need to lock yourself away in your bedroom for a few days and channel your feelings into some new songs, go for it.

Tell everyone you’re working on self-care in the name of product development. That’ll make you seem like you’re working toward a goal rather than slacking off. And that’s exactly what you’re doing. So, everyone calm down, Andrew will turn on his phone when he’s damn well ready.

(7) Know You’re on a Path Without End

The above statement sounds a little ominous, but it’s important for artists to recognize that they are on a journey that will last the course of their lives. True artists are always seeking to better their work.

And that is sort of inherently depressing. If you’re always seeking improvement, it means that every time you take a step forward, the work of your past feels lesser than what you are capable of. It’s a harsh cycle, but an important one.

It’s important to find a way to come to peace with yourself and your personal development as an artist. If you are continually looking to move forward, don’t be so hard on yourself if you’re not exactly where you feel you should be.

You’ll never get there. And, what’s more, you should never want to get there. Not really. Every time you attain new mastery, it’s time to move the bar again. The journey is the destination.

(8) Support Other Artists

Community-building is an important part of any artistic approach to the world. This is because artists are different. They place value on different things and fill their “free time” with different pursuits. And for this reason, as anyone with a family of “Normies” can tell you, artists tend to feel very isolated.

It’s important to seek out others like you so you have a support system that understands the things you hold sacred. The best way to do this is to head out into the world and find others like you.

Go to art shows or concerts and meet other people in the larger world who can appreciate the struggles and joys of the #ArtistLife. You might make connections that can help you find new opportunities to showcase your own work, but, more importantly, you might make some friends who are committed to their creative endeavors, just like you.

A little mutual support goes a long way toward making a “scene” feel like a family.

 (9) Know Thyself

This is the most important axiom. Probably of all time. Not only will understanding the inner workings of your mind improve your work, it can improve your life. Know what upsets your delicate internal balances and, more importantly, WHY.

Maybe crowds make you anxious. Maybe vodka evokes your inner anger. Maybe you get sad when the weather changes. Whatever your thing(s) is, know it and own it. That’s the only way you can manage it.

Spend time in the confines of your own mind and start charting your character. If the terrain becomes too treacherous, seek out a friend or professional therapist to be your Virgil as you ascend the levels of Hell.

The more you understand about yourself, the further you can delve in that self-exploration in your work. That sounds like a win-win.

~

YabYum Seven: Ashley Macias

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All photos courtesy of Ashley Macias

Who are you and what do you do?

Ashley Macias, a fine artist currently residing in downtown Phoenix, Arizona. My work is overall Surreal-Psychedelic and sometimes includes a mixture of Abstract-Organic elements. I primarily create illustrative, organic imagery and colorful, fluid paintings that are more than meets the eye. My work falls along the visionary element with a deep focus on the human psyche. When I’m not at home making art, I am sometimes painting walls or selling my artwork as a living. Its my bread and jam (butter excluded).

How did you get your start?

Developing my art has been a lifelong process. As a kid I always played with creativity whether it was drawing or painting or fantasizing the unknown and inner self. One of my earliest memories of wanting to be a artist was being seven years old and wanting to draw as good as my brother. I was inspired.

I never really opened my eyes to the art world and possibilities until I was twenty-one. My parents had other plans for me but I was an unhappy and confused individual. I knew making art was my life’s intention. I made some drastic lifestyle changes, including leaving my education to pursue art seriously. I moved to the downtown area a year later and committed myself to becoming a better artist.

I just kept drawing for hours every day every chance I got. I am self taught
so I had to learn a lot about myself and my focus. I wanted to give something of myself and share something personal and beautiful with others. I quickly reached out among the art community and met some great people along the way.ashley-macias 02

The downtown folks who make the art community so great really encouraged me and influenced me. I went around and emailed all the local eateries, coffee shops, and galleries and asked to hang my work wherever I could. It worked out. I knew being vulnerable and putting my art out for everyone to see would help me develop as a young artist.

From then on, I have been pushing myself in the same way toward seeing my career elevate while teaching me valuable lessons. It’s been a badass journey. I have had a lot of valuable experiences and continue to apply them to my work ethic and I just have a lot of fun doing it. Fun & Consistency is key.

What inspires you?

The Unknown Universe that lives within all of us; the colorful vibrations and connections we all share. I obsess over the human consciousness: being aware of nature and ourselves. It’s a lot of deep introspection and relatable feelings of the heart and mind.

A lot of my work is very organic and fluid in form, unfolding into plants and, well, LIFE. I try to apply nature and out of this world elements to people and animals. I apply life and death and all the human emotions we all share as best as I can to formulate a dramatic almost dance-like interpretation of our deeper connection.

Life is a dance but all those things are a part of matter, elements and atoms. There’s so much more to the work than meets the eye and really it all begins with an eye in my work. So the eye becomes my process that unfolds into introspection and strange things. One sees the depicted outer shells (human body, plants, animals, make-believe) but somehow it expresses the inner beauty and our true connection with the things we take for granted.

ashley macias 03What do you like about AZ?

I enjoy Arizona because of the possibilities. Although I have major grievances with our political agenda, I know it doesn’t represent the downtown arts community I have grown to love so much.

Downtown, especially, is more vibrant then ever. It wasn’t too long ago Roosevelt Row was a not so safe place to live. Now its blooming! Downtown has changed so much and the talent here is only getting better.

I enjoy the downtown community. So much local support and strong connections. With that said, I think Arizona has a lot of room for even greater possibilities and is a fresh, up-and-coming playground.

Where can we see you(r) work?

I have social media accounts such as Instagram, Facebook, Tumblr and a soon-to-go-up website where people can buy the work directly. In the meantime, I am currently hanging work in Knew Conscious Gallery – Ascension in Denver, CO. I am putting together a show for Estrella Mountain Community College to discuss my process as a way to inspire. I also have a show coming up in October with Booze Brothers in San Diego. Yay for booze!

What would you like to accomplish before you die?

I’ll never die.

What is your mantra?

Fuck it, why not?

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Higher Plane
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Eternal Love and Chaos

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YabYum Seven: Daisy Fromkin

daisy fromkin4Who are you and what do you do?

Daisy Fromkin- I am a photographer, a teacher, a writer, and jack of many trades, but master of none.

How did you get your start?

My father bought me a camera when I was in 2nd grade, it just went from there.

What inspires you?

Finding beauty in the often unseen. I look at all aspects of life and people to see their most touching natures.

What do you like about AZ?

Arizona has a natural beauty that is often striking and unusual. Each city is vastly different so there is always something to explore, see or experience.

Where can we see you(r) work?

My photography website sundaraarts.com or my blog, azculture.com.daisy fromkin

What would you like to accomplish before you die?

Everything! I love new experiences and throw myself into them full heart. I believe in learning as much as I can while I’m here.

What is your mantra?

Each day, everyday, ask “How can I help?”

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YabYum Seven: Tara Logsdon

unnamed (10)Who are you and what do you do?

Tara Logsdon and I create socially-enlightened art installations using teddy bears.

How did you get your start?

I ran a stuffed animal hospital at age 5 out of my bedroom closet and it all kinda snowballed from there.

What inspires you?

Vibration, motion, math, quantum connections, astronomy, philosophy, patterns, diagrams, triangles, trespassing, abandoned spaces, esoteric belief systems, old books, smart people, handwriting, dreams, rituals (especially those involving fire) … the freedom to follow whatever signals pull me no matter how subtle.

What do you like about AZ?

I feel very connected to the desert. There is undeniable honesty in its sparseness and all living things must be hardcore to survive here.

Where can we see you(r) work?

For the past couple years, I have been working in conjunction with the house of intuition in Los Angeles so my “bearot” and “sacred bearometry” are integrated in their stores and temple.

What would you like to accomplish before you die?

This is a long, ever-changing list but I am currently obsessed with the idea of puling off large-scale land art in our desert with the hopes it could be the start of a series or something that would outlive me. I also want to live at least one year at Auroville in India.

What is your mantra?

accept>adapt>repeat

~

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YabYum Seven: Rossitza Todorova

Rossitza Todorova TransluminalWho are you and what do you do?

My name is Rossitza Todorova and I am an artist. Drawing is my primary art medium with which I create works on paper, installations, and artist books. In my work, I explore the relationship between place and memory creating landscapes that capture the flux of time.

How did you get your start?

I was encouraged as a child and told that I had talent. However, it was when I immigrated to the US from Bulgaria that my artwork became a way to connect with my new surroundings and helped me to assimilate into my new home. Being an artist is more than a passion, it’s synonymous for me with identity.

What inspires you?

I find the most inspiration while traveling, I love the moment of getting in the car or on the plane where I get to look out the window and feel myself moving toward something. The transition into a new place is often the feeling I am striving to capture in my work.IMG_8604

What do you like about AZ?

I have also been so very lucky to learn from and work with wonderful, genuine, intelligent people that have supported my art and my ambitions in work and in my personal life. I really love the art community here and am so proud to see how it is growing.

Where can we see you(r) work?

  • May 26 – September 29, 2016 – “Aesthetics Primary,” Fifth Street School Mayor’s Gallery, Las Vegas, NV
  • August 15 – 26, 2016, “Artist: In Residence,” Harry Wood Gallery, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ
  • September 2 – 23, 2016 “Visions of Grandeur,” Chartreuse, Bragg’s Pie Factory, Phoenix AZ
  • July 18 – December 14, 2016 – “Rossitza Todorova,” Las Vegas City Hall, Las Vegas NV
  • August 6, 2017, “Anderson Ranch Art Center, 50th Anniversary Annual Art Auction,” Snowmass, CO
  • Visit my website

What would you like to accomplish before you die?

Have a retrospective at the New York Guggenheim. And, visit every continent and country on earth.

What is your mantra?

Ship, always ship.

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YabYum Seven: Sandra Ortega

unnamed (11)Who are you and what do you do?

I am a follower of Jesus, clothed as an artist, working in pastels and now oils. A member of the Arizona Pastel Artists Assoc. and Pastel Society of America. I also work at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. I am in a ministry to women in crises. And I’m married to Larry Ortega. We have two adult children and six beautiful grandkids.

How did you get your start?

My sixth grade teacher believed my art was good enough to enter it into the Laguna Beach Art Festival’s Children’s Exhibit. An she also entered it into Chapman College children’s art exhibit in Orange County. I finished my formal art education at Cal State Fullerton.

What inspires you?

I am awe struck at the dance of sunlight on an object. I am inspired by other artists of all mediums. And the human spirit is inspiring and emotionally captivating.

unnamed (1)What do you like about AZ?

I love Arizona! Coming here from Hawaii in 1980 it took about 3 years to get acclimated, but the beauty of the desert slowly came into focus. The desert is stunning. And I witness the most beautiful sunsets from my porch. Where else can you travel from the desert to ponderosa pine forest in an hour and 30 minutes? Arizona is truly the land of enchantment!

Where can we see your work?

I am in group shows two and sometimes three times a year with the Arizona Pastel Artists Assoc. I just got back from the Bisbee Plein Air Festival, where I was one of the two judges. I sold my plain air piece on display there. You can also see my art on my website.

What would you like to accomplish before you die?

My desire is to transition my painting style from a representational to more abstract. I also have a short bucket list and hope to accomplish that.

What is your mantra?

Observe the beauty around me each day, love people, love God.

 

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YabYum Seven: Emmett Potter

unnamed (2)Who are you and what do you do?

Emmett Potter and I am an artist.

How did you get your start?

I started in photography in the late 80’s and transitioned into graphic design by the 90’s. By 2006, I was really wanting to get back into creating artwork, but had no idea what direction to take. In 2008, I quit my day job and rented a studio at the now defunct Kollective in downtown Phoenix. The building is now occupied by FilmBar. That is where I met my wife, the artist, Kristin Bauer. We then became studio-mates in a little house on Portland Street with a friend of ours and then transitioned to a space in Scottsdale by 2010 that became our studio and also served as the home of Squeeze Gallery. That was where I really started putting up my work and selling as an artist.

What inspires you?

[A] good artist, my wife and kids, Carl Jung, pop culture, consumerism and life in general.

What do you like about AZ?unnamed

I like what AZ is becoming culturally, the desert landscape, and the good quality of life that is affordable in the Valley verses other metropolises.

Where can we see your work?

Currently, I was just in a two person show at Carlos Queso in Los Angeles and I will have a piece at the I.D.E.A. Museum in Mesa this summer.

What would you like to accomplish before you die?

A long, healthy life.

What is your mantra?

My mantra is: “The Dude abides.”

 

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YabYum Seven: Aaron Thomas Roth

MeWho are you and what do you do?

My name is Aaron Thomas Roth and I am a collage artist.

How did you get your start?

"Head to the Wall"
“Head to the Wall”

I was a freelance illustrator working in New York City in the 1990’s when I met designer Carlos Fachi. It was about that time I was working on large-scale collages which, for me, were more of a “fine art” application and completely different from my illustrative work. Carlos had an art gallery downtown at the time and after seeing my work he offered me my first solo New York exhibition.

What inspires you?

For me, inspiration comes when I least expect it and usually from the simplest of things. Seeing a photograph, hearing a song… or even just walking down the street and seeing a texture on a wall or a spill on a sidewalk can really be all that is needed for a foundation for a new piece.

 

Waiting For The Sun
“Waiting For The Sun”

What do you like about AZ?

Arizona is unlike any place I’ve ever lived. The weather and the landscapes here can be magical. I love standing outside on hot summer nights watching the lighting storms in the distance and listening to the far off rumbles of thunder.

I occasionally miss the seasons of the East Coast but there is something to be said for wearing a tee-shirt here in December.

Where can we see your work?

I would love to say I’m hanging here or there but at the moment my work is not hanging anywhere. This past year and a half I was unable to produce any new work and unfortunately had to cancel a couple of exhibitions. Now that I’m up and running again, I have decided to concentrate on just producing work. No distractions and no excuses…

What would you like to accomplish before you die?

I must say I have lead a very fortunate life… I’ve done all kinds of stuff but as a person who creates images that hopefully capture peoples attention, I think the ultimate for me would be to one day hang in the Whitney Museum of American Art in NYC. That would be the cherry on top.

What is your mantra?

Live in the moment… Live like there will be no tomorrow…. And trust no one! 😉

YabYum Seven: Cheryl Brandon

5dbe72b1-653f-4b1d-923f-a7b9b6678053Who are you and what do you do?

I remember how odd it felt the first time I spoke out loud that I, Cheryl Brandon, was an Artist. I always knew it was so, because my mother had recognized this talent in me at a very young age and sent me to study at the Oklahoma Science and Art Foundation. In fact, it was this institute with its petrified mummies on display under large glass cubicles that inspired me to be a figurative Clay Artist. I work with clay. With a little pressure and control of this very earthy medium, I am able to speak without using words.

How did you get your start?

I went to college and took every available class in clay. Pottery and sculpture were my main focus. It was pretty easy to see I was on to something because I could see other students work and compare my work to theirs as well as to my professors. And so, the light went on and I fell in love with it. I started competing with my college professors in many craft shows and exhibitions at their suggestion. This put me in the art world and proved to me that I belonged; that I could succeed in the field. By far the most impressive push I got early on was from sweet loving family. My brother and sister, along with my mother, went in together and purchased my first kiln. This gesture still brings a tear to my eye. I have truly been blessed with great support.

What inspires you?5f1c3279-a30f-40e3-a2cb-408a8842a263

I think it comes down to nature, anything from the world of nature, including human nature, and the way people interact to both. The most interesting and inspirational aspects of human nature is the way individuals deal with internal and external realities and conditions. Such as personal conflicts with internal dialog (that little voice we often time listen to), and perspectives on sexuality, especially for me, that of being female. So first is people and their spirits. Second is any form of beauty in nature, whether it is the wind, the sky, the colors or the strange beauty of plants and animals. I really like to work with both to create feelings that are familiar, universal, and speak to everyone. This is best noted in my latest work with totems.

What do you like about AZ?

When I first moved to Arizona in 1996, I could not believe my eyes. The plants reminded me of something from a different planet, strange beauty that sometimes bite, but demands respect. And wow! The places you can go: to the mountains, ski slope, or the canyons, such diversity and no matter where you are in Arizona, the sun shines every day, even if it rains. It is really hard to be in a bad mood with all the sunshine. Happiness for me is to feel the sun on my face and know that it will be the same tomorrow.

The people of Arizona are a very mixed bag from all parts, so you don’t have any barriers to break through. What I mean is, people in Arizona are friendly, trusting and accepting of newcomers. This makes it easy to call Arizona home. Plus, Phoenix is a very metropolitan city, and has a healthy Art Community, which is very attractive to me. And let’s not stop there, so many more art communities with great appeal to tourists and artists like Carefree, Sedona, Tucson, Bisbee, Tubac, Jerome, and Prescott. Any artist would be so lucky to live, love, and make (or sell) art in Arizona.

abca067b-f997-403a-b9d0-2fcc00f4c713Where can we see your work?

Presently, I am represented by Carsten’s Fine Art Gallery in Scottsdale. Or you can view my work on my website. In the past, I have shown in many galleries here in the valley, on Marshall Way, and Cave Creek as well as galleries in Santa Fe, Albuquerque, and Bernalillo, New Mexico. I also show in many group shows here in town such as The Shemer, The Herberger, the Alwun House, West Valley Museum, the Airport Museum, R. Pela Contemporary, Oblique Art, AZ Clay and wherever the “Calls to Artist” may lead me.

What would you like to accomplish before you die?

I have always wanted to have my own studio/gallery space so I would like to find a piece of property, in an art-savvy community, design and build my gallery. More than just a building, I would like this gallery to be inviting to everyone, not just artists and collectors. I believe that people need art and they want to live with art. But, more than sometimes, the art venues are somewhat intimidating. I would like to use a sense of humor and whimsy to reduce the intimidation, thus, bringing all types of people to the space. I want people to know what I know: that everything in our life is a symbol, a clue, a reminder of what we understand and what we don’t. These are the how’s and why’s of manifestation, the creation of Art. It is so simple, really. In art, look to the beauty for the truth and, to what hurts, for its beauty.

What is your mantra?

Thoughts become things. So be careful what you think. Choose the good ones.

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YabYum Seven: Fausto Fernandez

faustoWho are you and what do you do?

Fausto Fernandez: I am a fine artist. My works include a variety of mixed-media collages, paintings, public art, and community engagement projects. My studio creations are colorful, geometric, mixed-media collages on canvas, photo transfers of people and crowds and aviation renderings.

How did you get your start?

I studied graphic design and painting at the University of Texas in El Paso. A year after graduating in 2002, I moved to Phoenix where I continued to make art and completed a non-paid internship at the Scottsdale Public Art program. Thereafter, I was hired to install exhibitions as a contract museum preparator at The Heard Museum and Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMoCA). I later became an employee at the Arizona State University Art Museum for 5 years.

Working at the museums was my introduction to the Phoenix art scene, where I met other artists and worked alongside curators with whom I learned professional museum skills. I had the privilege of installing art shows for friends and other artists I admire, and this is how I received insight into the art world and started participating in shows. I moved into my first art studio at The Lodge on Grand Ave in 2002 where I was able to maintain my artist studio for 10 years. I later moved to Los Angeles and I currently live in Anthony, New Mexico.

What inspires you?

Living vicariously through the experiences and challenges of the people I’ve met. They challenge me and provide me with opportunities I didn’t think I was capable of achieving.

What do you like about Arizona?fausto3

The Arizona landscapes are beautiful. Arizona is my home away from home; It is where I was able to grow up independently from my family and where I have cultivated a good family of friends. Arizona has seen me fail and succeed, so I owe much of my experience to the 10 years I lived in Phoenix and I love it.

Where can we see you(r) work?

The floor at the Sky Harbor International Airport Sky Train Station in Phoenix, AZ; Turner Carroll Gallery and The Bataan Memorial Building in Santa Fe, NM; City Hall in El Paso, TX; East Rancho Dominguez park Installation in East Compton, CA and my Website and Instagram.

What would you like to accomplish before you die?

I’d like to own a classic car and go on a road trip, build a house with a studio to use as my home base, and travel to find a passion for something new and unexpected.

What is your mantra?

Make a lot of friends everywhere.

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